Last edited on 10/04/2011 at 00:14 AM (UTC3 Assyria)
The opposition grouping unites Syrian dissident movements across the political spectrum
Syrian opposition forms united front Source: Al Jazeera and agencies. October 2, 2011.
Syrian dissidents meeting in Turkey have formally announced the creation a national council aimed at toppling the rule of President Bashar al-Assad.
In his opening statement on Sunday in Istanbul, Burhan Ghalioun, a Paris-based Syrian academic, said that the new council would aim to support Syrians establish a civil state, adding that the new body rejected any international interference.
"The Syrian Council is open to all Syrians. It is an independent group personifying the sovereignty of the Syrian people in their struggle for liberty."
"It works to mobilise all categories of people in Syria and give the necessary support for the revolution to progress and realise the aspirations of our people for the overthrow of the regime, its symbols and its head."
The opposition grouping which Ghalioun called "historic" brings together Syrian movements across the political spectrum, including the long-banned Muslim Brotherhood as well as Kurds and Assyrians.
Ghalioun had recently been designated leader of the National Transitional Council, an opposition group which has both Islamist and secular supporters.
Ghalioun said with the new group, the Syrian opposition would act as "a united front in the face of the daily massacres committed by the regime against unarmed civilians, most recently in Rastan."
Nir Rosen, a journalist who has recently spent seven weeks in Syria, told al Jazeera that many people in the country had been worried about the lack of an alternative to Assad.
"So perhaps if actually have an alternative which is in place, they can show the majority of people in Damascus and Aleppo instead of Assad and instead of chaos and civil war."
Sunday's development came amid reports of continuing security crackdown on protests against Assad's rule.
Syrian troops have retaken control of the central town of Rastan after sending in 250 tanks to quell clashes between the army and deserters, human rights activists said on Sunday.
Three people were reported killed in clashes in Rastan on Saturday between the army and deserters.
Assad's government blames the violence raging for more than six months in Syria on "armed groups".
The office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva has said the death toll from the bloody crackdown has risen to more than 2,700 since March 15.
\ã-'sir-é-ä\ n (1998)
1: an ancient empire of Ashur
2: a democratic state in Bet-Nahren, Assyria (northern
Iraq, northwestern Iran, southeastern Turkey and eastern Syria.)
a democratic state that fosters the social and political rights to all of
its inhabitants irrespective of their religion, race, or gender
4: a democratic state that believes in the freedom of
religion, conscience, language, education and culture in faithfulness to the
principles of the United Nations Charter —
Ethnicity, Religion, Language
Israeli, Jewish, Hebrew
Assyrian, Christian, Aramaic
Saudi Arabian, Muslim, Arabic
\ã-'sir-é-an\ adj or n (1998)
1: descendants of the ancient empire of Ashur
2: the Assyrians, although representing but one single
nation as the direct heirs of the ancient Assyrian Empire, are now
doctrinally divided, inter sese, into five principle
ecclesiastically designated religious sects with their corresponding
hierarchies and distinct church governments, namely, Church of the
East, Chaldean, Maronite, Syriac Orthodox and Syriac Catholic.
These formal divisions had their origin in the 5th century of the
Christian Era. No one can coherently understand the Assyrians
as a whole until he can distinguish that which is religion or church
from that which is nation -- a matter which is particularly
difficult for the people from the western world to understand; for
in the East, by force of circumstances beyond their control,
religion has been made, from time immemorial, virtually into a
criterion of nationality.
the Assyrians have been referred to as Aramaean, Aramaye, Ashuraya,
Ashureen, Ashuri, Ashuroyo, Assyrio-Chaldean, Aturaya, Chaldean,
Chaldo, ChaldoAssyrian, ChaldoAssyrio, Jacobite, Kaldany, Kaldu,
Kasdu, Malabar, Maronite, Maronaya, Nestorian, Nestornaye, Oromoye,
Suraya, Syriac, Syrian, Syriani, Suryoye, Suryoyo and Telkeffee. —
1: a Semitic language which became the lingua franca of
the Middle East during the ancient Assyrian empire.
2: has been referred to as Neo-Aramaic, Neo-Syriac, Classical
Syriac, Syriac, Suryoyo, Swadaya and Turoyo.